EasyJet launches partnership with WestJet and Norwegian to expand international network
An easyJet aircraft takes off from Ciampino airport in Rome, Italy, on Aug. 30, 2004. (Corrado Giambalvo / AP)
Published Wednesday, September 13, 2017 2:33PM EDT
EasyJet has struck a partnership with Canada's WestJet airline and Norwegian Air that will allow passengers to book long-haul connecting flights to destinations like New York and Singapore in a move that significantly expands the low-cost carrier's network.
Called "Worldwide by easyJet," the new product is pitched as the first global airline connections service by a low-cost airline in Europe.
Customers will be able to create their own itineraries and travel to long-haul destinations previously out of easyJet's European network, by tacking on flight segments provided by its new launch partners.
That means being able to fly from Paris to Gatwick Airport in London, and tacking on a trans-Atlantic flight to New York, Los Angeles, Toronto or Vancouver through its airline partners.
Aside from North American cities, other long-haul destinations include Buenos Aires and Singapore.
The new launch is easyJet's response to the rapid rise of ultra low-cost carriers that are offering long-haul international flights at bargain basement prices. In order to stay in the game, "Worldwide by easyJet" ensures they're not left behind.
Iceland's WOW air is a prime example, which just last month launched $69 airfares between the U.S. and Europe for travel this fall.
WestJet also plans to launch an ultra low-cost carrier next year, while Barcelona-based Vueling brought another player into the fold called Level, which focuses on long-haul flights.
This week, Canada Jetlines likewise announced plans to start taking off next summer as an ultra low-cost carrier that will service airports about an hour's drive outside Toronto.
Meanwhile, easyJet is also in talks to expand the network with partner airlines in the Middle East and Asia, and add more airport partners within Europe such as Milan Malpensa, Geneva, Amsterdam, Paris Charles de Gaulle and Barcelona.